Experimental investigation of existing R/C frames strengthened by high dissipation steel link elements

  • Karalis, Apostolos A. (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Faculty of Engineering, School of Civil Engineering Laboratory of R/C and Masonry Structures) ;
  • Stylianidis, Kosmas C. (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Faculty of Engineering, School of Civil Engineering Laboratory of R/C and Masonry Structures)
  • Received : 2012.01.04
  • Accepted : 2013.04.25
  • Published : 2013.08.07


This paper presents the results of an experimental program concerning the efficiency of a specific strengthening technique which utilizes a small steel link element connected to the R/C frame through bracing elements. Brittle types of failure, especially at the connections between steel and concrete elements, can be avoided by appropriate design of the local details. Five single storey one bay R/C frames scaled 1:3 were constructed according to older codes with substandard details. The first one was a typical bare reference frame. The other four were identical to the first one, strengthened by steel bracing elements. The behavior of the strengthened frames is described with respect to the reference bare frame. The concrete frames were constructed according to older code provisions by the use of smooth steel bars, low strength concrete, sparsely spaced stirrups and substandard details. The strengthening scheme aimed to the increase of both strength and deformation capacity of the original R/C frame. The inelastic deformations are purposely concentrated to a short steel link element connecting the steel bracing to the R/C frame. The results show that the steel link element can increase considerably the strength and the energy dissipation capacity of the frame.


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